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3.6 Transfer Policy

AMENDMENT

In July 2020, this chapter was extensively updated and should be read throughout.


Contents

Caption: contents list
   
1. Guidance Outline and Exceptions
2. Overview of Teams
3. General Principles for the Transfer of all Cases in Children’s Social Care
4. MASH
5. Assessment Team
6. Specific Circumstances


1. Guidance Outline and Exceptions

This guidance outlines the transfer process for all cases from the point of referral, and should be read in conjunction with:


2. Overview of Teams

2.1 MASH: is the point of Initial Referral (for new referrals regarding children who do not have an allocated social worker) (see Initial Referral Procedure). In co-ordination with police and other partners the MASH will undertake the primary exchange of information and make a decision regarding the need for further statutory or non-statutory assessment or intervention in accordance with the Pathway to Provision (Nottinghamshire County Council).
2.2 Assessment Service: there are two Assessment Teams operating in the County, North (Mansfield, Bassetlaw and Newark) and South (Broxtowe, Gedling, Rushcliffe and Ashfield). Following the receipt of a new referral the Assessment Team will complete a Child and Family Assessment (see Child and Family Assessment Procedure) to determine whether the child is in need of specialist support from children’s social care, is in need of protection or a child in need of care. When required the Assessment Team will complete Section 47 enquiries and take emergency protective action to safeguard and protect the child. On completion of the Child and Family Assessment the case will either close, be stepped down or transfer to another children’s social care team with a child protection plan, child in need plan or care plan (Looked After Child).
2.3 District Child Protection Team: there are District Child Protection Teams for each of the 7 districts (Ashfield, Bassetlaw, Broxtowe, Gedling, Mansfield, Newark and Rushcliffe). The District Child Protection Teams complete all work with children who have a child in need (CIN) plan or child protection (CP) plan, as well as the initial care planning for looked after children.
2.4 Looked After Children and Leaving Care Service: a countywide service for looked after children (LAC), those children subject to legal proceedings and care leavers.
Court and Permanence: a county wide service for children who are subject of legal proceedings and children where there is a plan for adoption.
2.5 Children's Disability Service: a countywide service which carries out all of the statutory social work duties and responsibilities for children and young people with a permanent and substantial disability, see Children's Disability Service - Threshold Criteria for Children's Social Care. Following the receipt of a new referral the Children's Disability Service undertake Child and Family Assessments (including Section 47 enquiries), complete all work with children who have a Child in Need (CIN) plan or Child Protection (CP) plan, as well as the care planning for Looked After Children, working with children subject to legal proceedings and those transitioning into adult care services.


3. General Principles for the Transfer of all Cases in Children’s Social Care

3.1 The safe and smooth transition of work between all social workers and teams is essential in protecting the child and promoting the child's welfare.
3.2 Cases will transfer at an appropriate time for the child and family.
3.3 As soon as a transfer is recommended, the transferring team manager and the nominated manager for the receiving team must have a conversation and reach agreement about the timing and arrangements for the transfer and ensure there is a smooth transition for the child and their family. It is essential that there is good communication between the outgoing manager and incoming manager and when needed telephone conversations and face to face meetings will take place.
3.4 When there is a transfer from the MASH or an Assessment Team to a District Child Protection Team the outgoing manager will ensure that at the earliest opportunity details of the child are sent to the incoming District Child Protection Team using the district transfer e-mail address. The District Child Protection Team Managers will respond and advise who will become the allocated social worker for the child.
3.5 When cases transfer from an Assessment Team to a District Child Protection Team an invitation to attend the planning meeting (child in need planning meeting, child protection conference or looked after review) must be sent to the incoming District Child Protection Team using the district transfer e-mail address. The District Child Protection Team Managers will respond and advise who will be attending the meetings.
3.6 The electronic case file (Mosaic) for each child must be up to date, all steps, case notes, minutes, plans and a chronology must be completed as appropriate at the point the transfer. The person summary on the child’s electronic case record must be updated ensuring all known family members are cross referenced, telephone numbers and contact details are correct and known professionals are linked.
3.7 It is the responsibility of the outgoing social worker to ensure that all professionals, family members and child(ren) know why there is a transfer, when this will happen and the contact details of the new social worker.
3.8 It is the responsibility of the incoming team to immediately communicate with all family members and professionals to confirm the name and contact details of the social worker, team manager and where available social work support officer (SWSO).
3.9 Once the transfer is agreed the outgoing and receiving social worker must have a conversation to share information.
3.10 Where there is a transfer (except transferring from the MASH) the outgoing and receiving social workers should work together to ensure all relevant information is shared. The receiving social workers should be invited to attend the child in need planning meeting, child protection conference or looked after review where the future plan for the child is going to be agreed. When possible the outgoing social worker should introduce the receiving social worker in person to the child(ren) and key family members either at the planning meeting (as above) or at a separate meeting or home visit. Organising this must not delay the transfer of a case.
3.11 Upon transfer, cases will be assigned to the incoming work folder for the receiving team. Any immediate actions required or dates agreed must be made explicit at the time of transfer. Management responsibility and oversight of the work must be clear at all times.
3.12 In all cases (except transfer from MASH to another team [1]) the outgoing social worker must write a case note titled ‘Transfer Immediate Actions’ which will alert the incoming manager and social worker to actions which need to be completed immediately, specifically, information regarding financial arrangements and contact must be made explicit.
3.13 In all cases (except transfer from the Assessment Service [2]) the outgoing social worker must write a case note titled ‘Transfer Summary’ which contains details of the agreed case transfer, a summary of the child’s current circumstances and details of any actions to be undertaken. This must include the dates and details of any forthcoming meetings, visits or reviews.
3.14 In all cases the outgoing team manager must write a case note titled ‘Case Transfer’ which details the agreement with the receiving team manager and date of the case transfer.
3.15 Due to the specific needs of a child or family there may be times when it is appropriate for a transfer to another social worker or team which is outside the normal transfer process. In these instances the children’s service manager (CSM), for the outgoing and receiving teams must reach agreement about the timing and arrangements for the case transfer and ensure there is a smooth transition. The outgoing CSM must write a case note titled ‘Case Transfer’ which details the agreement with the receiving CSM and date of the case transfer.

[1] The MASH enquiry and outcomes should contain all relevant information and rational for progression to assessment, a separate ‘Transfer Immediate Actions’ case note should not be required.

[2] When a case transfers from an Assessment Team there will be a completed Child and Family Assessment and a completed plan for the child. The assessment and plan will contain the required information regarding the reasons why the case is transferring, the needs and risks which need to be met and the outstanding work which is required to meet these needs and risks.


4. MASH

4.1 All enquiries (apart from the exceptions listed below) regarding the welfare and protection of a child, which meet the level 4 threshold (see Pathway to Provision (Nottinghamshire County Council)) for Children's Social Care involvement will transfer from the MASH to the relevant Assessment Team or Children's Disability Service for a Child and Family Assessment to be undertaken.
4.2

The maximum time cases will be held in the MASH before it is transferred will be determined by the initial RAG rating (colour-coded priority):

Red: Will be processed by MASH within 1 working day (8.5 hours) Assessment Team will be immediately alerted about the nature of the case;

Amber: Will be processed by MASH within 2 days (17 working hours);

Green: Will be processed by MASH within 3 working days (25.5 working hours).

4.3 The MASH team manager is responsible for the quality assurance of the information collected and shared in the MASH. Prior to transfer the manager must confirm in the actions and decisions form that they have reviewed the information and the threshold for Children's Social Care involvement is met.
4.4 Once the relevant and necessary data collection and investigation has been undertaken the MASH team manager will determine the point at which a MASH enquiry [3] is complete and the case should be transferred.
4.5

Exceptions: the following will transfer directly from MASH to the relevant team(Includes Public and Private Law Proceedings)

  • Any closed case re-referred within three months will be returned to the team that closed the case (except for the court team). In exceptional circumstances if the case was close just outside the three months and it is deemed most appropriate for the previous social care team to take the case the team managers for the two teams should agree this;
  • Requests for Section 7 or Section 37 Court Reports will transfer from the MASH to the Court Team unless it is an open case, in which case it will transfer to the team where the child is open;
  • Proceedings initiated by another Local Authority will transfer to the Court Team; if at an early point in proceedings or to District Child Protection Teams if an Order is near to being made e.g. Supervision Order;
  • Re-referrals: Any closed case re-referred within three months will be returned to the team that closed the case [4];
  • Chid in Need (CIN) cases transferred in from another Local Authority will transfer from the MASH to the relevant District Child Protection Teams. Prior to the case transfer the MASH must ensure that the outgoing authority has provided detailed information regarding the assessment completed and the child in need plan;
  • Children with a Child Protection Plan who are moving to Nottinghamshire from another Local Authority will be referred to the Safeguarding Children Information Management Team (SCIMT) and transferred to the District Child Protection Teams where the child lives;
  • Referrals regarding unborn babies may be eligible transfer directly from the MASH to the Ccourt Team in specific circumstances such as parents who have had previous children removed and the court proceedings were concluded in the last 6 months. In each case the CSM for MASH and CSM for Court Team would need to agree that this transfer is appropriate.

[3] A ‘MASH enquiry’ is the means by which a new referral to children’s social care is recorded by the MASH.

[4] The date of closure is fixed when the last step, on the child(ren’s) case file has been completed. If the family have moved to live in a different district the case should transfer to the relevant team which covers the new district. Re-referral of cases that have been previously open to Children's Disability Service will be transferred from MASH directly to Children's Disability Service unless the criteria for Children's Disability Service are no longer met.


5. Assessment Team

5.1 All cases (apart from the exceptions listed below) will transfer from the Assessment Team to the relevant District Child Protection Teams (The District of the child’s permanent address) with a completed Child and Family Assessment and a completed plan for the child(ren) (Child in Need Plan, Outline Child Protection Plan or Plan for a Looked After Child), which has been agreed at the relevant Multi-agency planning meeting (Child in Need Planning Meeting ProcedureInitial Child Protection Conference Procedure or First Looked After Review Procedure).
5.2

Exceptions: the following will go directly to the relevant team.

  • Children/young people for whom there is a permanent Looked After Child (LAC) plan will transfer to the Through Care Team;
  • Cases that have been closed in the Looked After Child Team and the child has been re-accommodated will transfer to the Looked After Child team;
  • Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC) will be transferred to the Assessment Team for completion of the initial information gathering and where required complete an initial assessment of age assessment, prior to transfer to the Looked After Children Team at the placement planning meeting (held within 72 hours);
  • If during the course of a Child and Family Assessment it becomes clear that the nature of the concern or need is in relation to a child’s disability the case should transfer to the Children’s Disability Team, see Children's Disability Service - Threshold Criteria for Children's Social Care;
  • Referrals regarding unborn babies may be eligible transfer directly from the MASH to the Court Team in specific circumstances such as parents who have had previous children removed and the court proceedings were concluded in the last 6 months. In each case the CSM for Assessment Team and CSM for Court Team would need to agree that this transfer is appropriate.


6. Specific Circumstances

Caption: Specific Circumstances
   

1.

Private Fostering

  i. The Private Fostering Procedure Suitability Assessment is completed by the Local Authority where the Private Foster Carer lives.
  ii. If the private foster carer lives outside of Nottinghamshire, the relevant local authority will be notified who will undertake the assessment of suitability.
  iii. If a notification of private fostering arrangement is received regarding an arrangement within Nottinghamshire a record of the Private Fostering Notification should be entered on electronic case record for the child(ren) and adult carer(s) by the team who receives the notification.
  iv. A Private Fostering Suitability Assessment is the only assessment required unless additional needs or risks are identified and an assessment under Section 17 or Section 47 Children Act (1989) is needed.
  v. If a Private Fostering Suitability Assessment is required for a child who has an open case and where the private foster carer lives in Nottinghamshire, the allocated social worker will complete the initial visit within 7 days and the full Private Fostering Suitability Assessment regarding the child(ren) and adult carer(s) within 45 days.
  vi. If a Private Fostering Suitability Assessment is required for a child who does not have an allocated social worker and where the private foster carer lives in Nottinghamshire, MASH will complete the private fostering notification mosaic steps on the child and the carer(s). This will will transfer directly to the relevant District Child Protection Team or Children Disability Team who will complete the initial visit within 7 days to determine that the case is private fostering and that there are no immediate safeguarding concerns with the child’s placement. The allocated social worker will then undertake the Private Fostering Suitability Assessment and private foster carer checks within the 45 day period.

2.

Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children

  i. If the decision is made that the Local Authority will accept an Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Child (UASC) under the National Transfer Scheme (NTS) see Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children Procedure. MASH will complete a MASH Enquiry using the information from the Unaccompanied Unique Child Record (UUCR) and then transfer the case to the appropriate team.
  ii. When an UASC is already identified as being Section 20 (CA 1989) Looked After the case will transfer directly to the Looked After Children Team and the normal Looked After Children process is followed from this point:
  iii.

All other cases will be transferred to the Assessment Team to complete an initial assessment of age if required. The case will transfer to the Looked After Children Team at the placement planning meeting (held within 72 hours). The assessment service will complete all the relevant paper work for a looked after child including the IHA form and alert the IRO service. This includes:

  • Dubs Case – Assessment Team until placement planning meeting (and following age assessment if required) then transfer to Looked After Children Team;
  • Dublin III – Assessment Team completes the viability assessment and then transfer to District Child Protection Teams if open on CIN Plan at CIN Planning Meeting. If accommodated due to accommodation with family not being viable then accommodated under s20 and transfer to Looked After Children Team at 72 hour placement planning meeting.

3.

Homeless 16/17 year olds

 

The relevant Assessment Team will complete a child and family assessment, and this will determine whether the young person should be considered as a child in need who needs accommodation under S20 Children Act (1989). This decision will be, dependent on whether the child is deemed to be homeless or whether there are any safeguarding issues. This will include consideration to what support has been put in place by the Family Service and whether family mediation has taken place.

If S20 is deemed appropriate, there will be a transfer at the placement planning meeting and the young person will have an allocated social worker in the relevant District Child Protection Team.

4.

Harmful Sexual Behaviour

  i.

Please refer to NSCP, Unexpected Death of a Child Procedure.

Where there is reason to suspect that a child has displayed Harmful Sexual Behaviour, the needs of this child and the victim (if identified) must be considered in a Child and Family Assessment.
  ii.

Following a new enquiry, the referral will transfer from the MASH to the Assessment Team where the Child and Family Assessment will be completed.

The assessment will consider whether an incident has occurred, and if the described circumstances are considered Sexually Abusive or Sexually Problematic.

The assessment should determine whether the child is in need, the nature of any services required and whether a specialist HSB assessment should be undertaken to assist the local authority in its decision making.

Agreement to undertake the child and family assessment should be gained. The child and family can choose not to participate in the assessment process, in these circumstances the assessment must be completed with the information available with a judgement as to whether the reported behaviour / incident is Sexually Abusive or Sexually Problematic and whether there are any identified risks for the alleged perpetrator, the victim and wider community.

If the child and family assessment does identify that the child has sexually abused another child, the Assessment Team Manager must decide whether a child against whom an allegation has been made should be the subject of a Specialist HSB Assessment. If a specialist HSB assessment is needed the Assessment Team Manager must contact the designated Child Protection Coordinators immediately and agree the next steps.

Where a specialist HSB assessment and attendance at HSB panel is agreed the Assessment Team social worker will book the HSB panel (45 days in advance) and the case will immediately transfer to the District Child Protection team to complete the specialist HSB Assessment and attend the HSB panel.

If a specialist HSB assessment is not needed the Assessment Team will conclude the child and family assessment (see paragraph 5.1).
  iii. Where a Specialist HSB Assessment is needed for a child / young person who has an allocated SW, the allocated social worker (and a an AIM trained Social Workera HSB lead practitioner) should complete an updated Child and Family Assessment / specialist HSB assessment and where needed present the case to a HSB panel.

5.

Child Sexual Exploitation

 

Please refer to 6.0 Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation

  • The Assessment Service will complete the Child and Family assessment along with the CSE risk assessment tool and if CSE is felt to be of concern the team manager will consider whether to have a discussion with the CSE lead to determine if the CSE strategy meeting is needed. This will be dependent on the team managers professional judgement and consideration of the assessment and information available;
  • If the CSE lead makes the decision that a CSE strategy meeting is needed then this will be held within 5 working days of this decision. The Assessment Service SWsocial worker will book the Strategy Meeting. If further assessment or intervention is required and the case willthere will be a transfer to theat following the meeting and the child / young person will be allocated a social worker from the relevant DCPT at this meetingDistrict Child Protection Team.

The Assessment Service will attend the CSE Strategy Meeting along with the DCPTDistrict Child Protection Team.

If a CSE strategy meeting is not agreed with the child protection CSE lead, then the case will transferthere will be a transfer postafter the Child and Family Assessment to the District Child Protection Team if there is an ongoing role for children’s social care.

The CSE lead will enter a case note on the child’s electronic record (Mosaic) with their decision making and rationale in respect of the need to hold a CSE strategy meetings.

6.

Fabricated or Induced Illness

 

Please refer to Nottinghamshire Safeguarding Partnership – Interagency safeguarding Childrens Procedure: Fabricated or Induced Illness.

If the decision in the MASH in conjunction with the child protection FII lead) is that FII is evidenced, then the case transfers directly to the District Child Protection Teams. By virtue of the case being deemed fabricated or Induced Illness, this would exceed a ’10 day assessment’ and often exceeds a ’45 day assessment’.

If the decision in the MASH (in conjunction with the child protection FII lead) is that the FII is not evidence, but further information gathering and assessment is require this will transfer to the Assessment Service to complete a Child and family Assessment.

If the decision in the MASH and in conjunction with the child protection FII lead is that the case is not deemed FII, then the Assessment Service will undertake the Child and Family Assessment.

7.

Mental Health

  Child on S2 or 3 deemed child in need or looked after. Pass through from MASH to long term team within Children's Disability Service CDS to complete a Cchild and Ffamily Aassessment.

8.

AAP

 
  • When a new referral is made regarding a child who does not have an allocated social worker both the child and alleged perpetrator cometransfer from the MASH to the relevant assessment team;
  • When a referral is made regarding a child who already has an allocated social worker the assessment regarding the child is completed by the allocated social worker and the assessment regarding the alleged perpetrator is completed by the relevant Assessment Team;
  • If further assessment or intervention is agreed at the first AAP meeting the Adult (alleged perpetrators) should transfer to the relevant District Child Protection Team post first AAP meeting.

9.

No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF)

  Please refer to: No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) PPGs Flow Chart.
 

If MASH receive a referral in relation to No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) then MASH will identify whether threshold is met for an Assessment. If so, then this will be transferred from the MASH to the relevant Assessment Team or Countywide Disability Service for a Child and Family Assessment. This should be completed alongside a Human Rights Assessment (HRA) in order to identify whether the individual/family is facing destitution without social care support. This may result in temporary support being identified until the relevant Child and Family Assessment and Human Rights Assessment is completed. If it is identified that the family are not NRPF status then support will not be offered under the NRPF Policy, Procedure and Guidance unless there are other child protection concerns warranting involvement at level 4 threshold (Pathway to Provision).

Once the Assessment Team / Children's Disability Service have completed a Child and Family Assessment and Human Rights Assessment, if there is a support plan(s) identified, then it is expected for there to be a transfer to the appropriate District Child Protection Teams /Family Service/other appropriate Social Care Team or another Local Authority in a timely manner as part of a Child in Need/multi-agency meeting.

  1. Transfer to District Child Protection Teams

    Upon completion of a Child and Family Assessment (including HRA), if it is agreed that there is a need for support provision by the Local Authority and there are additional complexities or child protection concerns that are not meeting threshold for s47 (CA 1989) involvement, then the case will transfer on s17 Child in Need to the relevant District Child Protection Teams at a Child in Need Planning Meeting. The Child in Need Plan will then be managed accordingly and reviewed every 6-8 weeks as part of the Child in Need Review process.
  2. Transfer to the Family Service

    Upon completion of a Child and Family Assessment (including HRA), if it is agreed that there is a need for a financial support provision by the Local Authority but there are no additional complexities or child protection concerns, then the case should step-down to the Family Service at a multi-agency meeting (using the Child in Need Planning Meeting episode in Mosaic). A support plan will then be managed accordingly within the Family Service by the Financial Responsibility Worker and reviewed every 12 weeks as part of the case review process.
  3. Transfer to Childrens Disability Service

    The above procedures for Assessment Teams transfer to the District Child Protection Teams will apply to the Childrens Disability Service where there is a disabled child(ren) in the family unit and where the thresholds are met for Tier 4 social care involvement in relation to the child’s disability. However, if the child’s disability is not the main involvement factor then it is likely that the case will remain with either the appropriate District Child Protection Teams or step-down to the Family Service.

10.

Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE)

 

Please refer to: Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation Procedure.

A child and family assessment will be undertaken by the Assessment Service alongside the CCE risk assessment if elements of CCE are identified. If the CCE risk assessment outcome is low risk, then the team manager may decide to hold a multi agency meeting. If the CCE risk assessment outcome is medium risk, the team manager will decide along with the CCE lead who chairs a multi agency meeting. This will either be the team manager or the CCE lead. If the outcome of the CCE risk assessment is high risk, then the team manager will discuss this with the CCE lead and a decision will be reached by the CCE lead as to whether they chair a multi agency meeting or it is more appropriate for an ICPC. The CCE lead will record the outcome of this discussion on all occasions.

11.

Child Death Rapid Response

 

Please refer to NSCP, Unexpected Death of a Child Procedure.

Where there is an unexpected child death, information gathering will take place in the MASH, and the case will transfer to the relevant Assessment Team who will attend the initial case discussion and follow up meeting.

Where a child has died in suspicious circumstances it is the Assessment Team who will take the lead to arrange the multi-agency Child Death Strategy Meeting and complete a Child and Family Assessment and Section 47 enquiries regarding all children / young people living in the household.

If a follow up Child Death Strategy Meeting is agreed, but no role is identified for the Children’s Social Care (CSC) the case will close. If CSC is requested to attend a follow up meeting the Assessment Team, team manager or social worker will attend.

12.

Unborn Babies

 

Please refer to NSCP, Responding to Abuse and Neglect Procedure, Potential Risk of Harm to an Unborn Child.

There is no minimum gestational age at which MASH enquiry [5] will be accepted. It is essential that a thorough assessment and care planning is undertaken at an early stage, avoiding crisis intervention.

If the threshold for assessment is met regarding an unborn child a Child and Family Assessment [5] should be completed to determine whether further CSC involvement / interventions are required. If the unborn baby is deemed to be at risk of Significant Harm, an Initial Child Protection Conference (ICPC) should be held at the earliest opportunity prior to Estimated Due Date (EDD).

All enquiries that come into the MASH of a relinquished baby will transfer to the Assessment Team for a Child and Family Assessment [5] to be completed (this should be done jointly with the Permanence Team).

In cases where assessment of an unborn child is required and there is an older sibling with an allocated Social Worker in an Assessment Team, District Child Protection Team or Children's Disability Service, the child enquiry will transfer from the MASH and the Child and Family Assessment will be completed by the team in which the older sibling is open.

In cases where assessment of an unborn child is required and there is an older sibling with an allocated Social Worker in the Through Care Team the child enquiry regarding the unborn will transfer to the Assessment Team to complete a Child and Family Assessment. Whilst the Child and Family Assessment is completed there should be close working between the allocated social worker in the Assessment Team and the allocated Social Worker in the Through Care Team ensuring sharing of information. The allocated social worker in the Though Care Team will provide the social worker in the Assessment Team with an updated Chronology.

Where there has been a significant family history, but no CSC involvement for over three months the referral of an unborn child will transfer from the MASH to the Assessment Team to complete a Child and Family Assessment. In these circumstances, discussion is needed between the Assessment Team Manager and the relevant previous Team Manager to ensure that knowledge of the case history is utilised to provide a coherent approach to siblings within the family.

No child should be discharged from hospital where there are safeguarding concerns unless there is an agreed plan between the responsible consultant and CSC as to how those concerns will be addressed and the child adequately safeguarded on discharge. If concerns are identified prior to the birth of a child NSCP, Responding to Abuse and Neglect Procedure must be followed. This does not mean that delays in discharge through inadequate planning are acceptable.

13.

Legal Planning Meetings

 
  1. When considering a legal planning meeting please refer to Legal Planning Meetings and Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline;
  2. The cases of children who require a LPM will transfer according specifications below:
    • Emergency legal planning meetings by the Assessment Team;
    • The agreed principle is that the Assessment Service will only hold Legal Planning Meetings in emergency situations and where immediate issue is likely;
    • If there is any element of planning for the Legal Planning Meeting then these should will be held following the transfer out of the Assessment Team and led and organised by the incoming team. TheAssessment Service CSM’s will discuss these with their colleagues in District Child Protection Team (or other incoming team) to ensure the matter is transferred with out delay and all relevant information and decision making is available for the LPM.

      Where the Assessment Service do hold LPM’s and where the decision is to make an application for a court order, the case will transfer to the Court Service at the first hearing regardless of the outcome of that hearing.

      In the event of a Court hearing date not being within 10 working days of papers being submitted to legal services, the case will transfer to the Court Service. The Assessment Service will attend the first hearing alongside the court Service.

      In cases where the LPM’s outcome indicates the start of pre-proceedings (PLO), there will be a transfer to the relevant District Child protection Team, with the PLO letter written jointly between the Assessment and District Child Protection Team, Team Managers. The District Child Protection Team, TeamManager will chair the meeting and the Assessment Team Social Worker will attend:
      1. Planned LPM arranged by District Child Protection Teams, Children's Disability Service or Looked After Children Team – case will remain with the team who arranged the LMP who will complete the paperwork and the allocated social worker and team manager to attend the LPM;
      2. Urgent LPM arranged by a District Child Protection Team, Children's Disability Service or Looked After Children Team with outcome:

        Public Law Outline (PLO), Case remains with the team who arranged the LPM with the expectation that the work will continue within that process.

        Whilst in PLO process - If the District Child Protection Teams Team Manager is of the view that an application to court should be made they will ensure that updated paperwork is approved by the District Child Protection Teams CSM prior to the second review of the PLO process (16 weeks).
      If the District Child Protection Teams CSM approves the plan to make an application to court the updated paperwork will be sent to CSM Court and Permanence who will review this and record the decision on child’s file within 5 working days. In cases where amendments are required these will be completed by District Child Protection Teams in 5 working days and returned to CSM for Court and Permanence who will record the decision on child’s file. Legal Services are then advised of the decision to proceed with an application to court.

If the District Child Protection Teams CSM approves the plan to make an application to court the updated paperwork will be sent to CSM Court and Permanence who will review this and record the decision on child’s file within 5 working days. In cases where amendments are required these will be completed by District Child Protection Teams in 5 working days and returned to CSM for Court and Permanence who will record the decision on child’s file. Legal Services are then advised of the decision to proceed with an application to court.

The case will transfer to the Court Team at the CMH.

In Looked After Children cases CSM’s will agree point at which case transfers.

Immediate Issue will transfer to the Court Team at the CMH.

[5] A separate ‘pre-birth assessment’ should not be completed, all relevant information regarding the unborn child, their needs and identified risks should be incorporated into this ‘single assessment’.


Appendices

Appendix 1: Pre-Birth Assessment

Appendix 2: Transfer Checklist

Appendix 3: Transfer Summary

End